LSU runs away from Southern Miss

Published 12:26 am Sunday, October 16, 2016

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Derrius Guice broke loose for touchdowns of 61 and 20 yards early in the third quarter, and LSU used a slew of big plays in the second half to break open what had been an unexpectedly close game and defeat Southern Miss 45-10 on Saturday night.

LSU had two long one-play touchdown drives — an 80 yard catch-and-run by D.J. Chark and a 63-yard reception by Malachi Dupre on Danny Etling’s long heave.

LSU safety Jamal Adams helped the Tigers pull away when he forced Golden Eagles’ running back George Payne’s fumble and then recovered it at the USM 26-yard line, setting up Guice’s second score.
In the span of the third quarter, LSU (4-2) turned a 10-all tie into a 38-10 lead.

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“Night and day. Two completely different (halves),” Southern Miss coach Jay Hopson said. “I thought the one thing we did good defensively in the first half was we played solid and we didn’t give up big plays and tackled. It was that third quarter. It was just big play, big play, big play.”

Guice finished with 162 yards on 16 carries in his third start this season in place of Leonard Fournette, who is recovering from a left ankle injury and has not played since LSU’s loss at Auburn on Sept. 24.
The 5-foot-11, 212-pound Guice has rushed for at least 155 yards in each of his starts.

Dupre added another touchdown on a 23-yard reception in the fourth quarter. Chark also scored a 19-yard rushing touchdown on an end-around in the first half.

Etling finished with his best numbers since taking over as LSU’s starter in the third game of the season, completing 11 of 18 passes for 276 yards and three TDs.

Guice gave LSU the lead for good when he sprinted through a gaping hole blown open by the left side of LSU’s offensive line and then galloped into the open field for a career-long scoring run.

While Guice’s first touchdown demonstrated his break-away speed, his second showcased his elusiveness as he darted forward and then cut suddenly outside to elude would-be tacklers.

“We were executing at a high level in the first half,” Southern Miss linebacker Elijah Parker said. “Everybody was gap fitting. In the second half, we had a few eye penalties — eyes not on the right guys, guys out of their gaps. They had big plays.”

Ito Smith scored on a 1-yard run that gave Southern Miss (4-3) its only lead of the game at 7-0 with 6:58 left in the first quarter.

Golden Eagles quarterback Nick Mullens completed 25 of 36 passes for 161 yards. He didn’t throw an interception, but was sacked twice.